People like to research prices before they make a big purchase - and that goes for everything from cars to surgery. At least, that’s what Democratic Assemblymember Roger Hernandez says. He says his bill would create a website that lists costs of medical procedures, so that consumers can find the best deal.
“It’s important for consumers to be equipped with the information that will give them the power to question billing practices, to question a procedure that they feel they’re being overcharged for, and thus maybe the insurance company is being overcharged for,” Hernandez says.
The website would display the amount charged for a healthcare service, and how much was actually paid. Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones supports the idea of an online database.
“When you think about it, for every other good or service that we purchase, you can see a price list, but not medical services. And the prices vary all over the place. Even from the same medical provider,” Jones says.
Jones says there may be legal impediments to making more health pricing information publically available.
A recently-introduced bill would ban one of the nation’s most widely-used pesticides, chlorpyrifos. The Obama Administration moved to ban it in 2015, over health concerns, but this year the Trump Administration reversed that decision.
Californians enrolled in Covered California will see premiums rise by an average of 12.5 percent next year. And Anthem Blue Cross of California is withdrawing from most regions of the state.
A Planned Parenthood-sponsored art exhibit is on display downtown this week. The multimedia pieces highlight issues in reproductive health.
(AP) - A California bill to replace health insurance companies with universal government-funded care is advancing to a vote in the full Senate.
The vote was 217-213. The measure now goes to the Senate, where it is expected to undergo intense debate and significant revision.